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Akie Kutsunai moved to Minneapolis from Nashville after receiving her master’s degree to teach American Literature, classics in society and speculative fiction at SPA.

Akie Kutsunai is excited to explore the creativity of SPA students

Akie Kutsunai moved to Minneapolis from Nashville after receiving her master’s degree to teach American Literature, classics in society and speculative fiction at SPA. She is excited about the flexibility within the writing classes she is teaching, especially working with students’ creativity and ideas. She hopes to work with students who may want to build off less traditional narratives and more modern ones, such as movies, podcasts, video games, etc.

“I love listening to podcasts, I listen to a lot of nonfiction ones. So just seeing, you know, how I can bring some of those things into the classroom, what kind of things people are interested in here. If somebody wanted to do a creative piece, you know, that was pulling on some video game things, or if they wanted to do more of a personal essay kind of assignment,” said Kutsunai.

Part of this appreciation for a more modern narrative approach comes from Kutsuani’s love for watching horror movies and reading ghost stories. “When I was in graduate school there was sort of an ongoing argument happening specifically with English education about what kinds of things we can study as a text, so I’m very curious to see how we can nudge on that here,” said Kutsunai.

Another reason Kutsunai is excited to explore more creative writing at SPA comes from her past teaching jobs, where she taught more critical essay courses.

“I don’t feel like I’m a very creative person. So that is always a struggle for me thinking about how can I give my students sort of more room to play without sort of dragging them,” said Kutsunai.

Kutsunai is excited for a new challenge at SPA, to not only see what her students will create but also how she can maximize and encourage their creativity.

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